WATERFORD MANUFACTURING

From A Topographical Dictionary of Ireland, 1837

The manufactures are very inconsiderable. Carrick-on-Suir was once the centre of a very extensive manufacture of woollens, chiefly ratteens and stuffs: but the trade is now nearly extinct. Linen, though made in all parts for domestic use, was never an article of commercial importance. Cotton-manufactories were established at Cheekpoint and in some other places, all of which have totally failed; but a factory has been since erected at Mayfield by Mr. Malcolmson for spinning and weaving cotton, in which nearly 900 persons are employed. The cloth is in great demand; much of it is shipped for Manchester. At Fairbrook, or Phairbrook, near Waterford, is an extensive paper-mill, furnishing employment to 150 persons. A large distillery is now being erected at Clashmore.

The fisheries are of much value, and capable of great extension. The embayed nature of the coast renders it the resort of great quantities of fish of every kind; the Nymph bank, about seven miles distant, abounds with immense shoals of round fish. Hake, which is the leading object of the fishery, is taken in the mackarel season, which commences in June. Cod and ling are in season from October to February, and both are very fine: the former is chiefly consumed fresh; the latter is salted, dried and sent chiefly to Dublin. The most valuable kinds of flat fish are taken in quantities limited only by the want of a more extensive market. Although herrings visit the coast yearly, the quantities taken are comparatively insignificant, scarcely sufficing for the home consumption: the season is from September to Christmas. The coast abounds with various kinds of shell-fish.

The striking advantages of situation for the fishery which the eastern coast possesses have not yet been made fully available: the villages of Portally, Rathmoylan, Ballymacaw, and Summerville, are principally occupied by poor fishermen, who are also small farmers and divide their time between both occupations. The cause of the want of exertion in this class of men is the deficiency of any shelter from the prevailing winds from the south and south-west, to which this coast is greatly exposed; in consequence of which the fishermen are compelled to draw up their boats high on the beach in foul weather, and in violent and sudden storms, having no safe harbour to resort to, cannot fearlessly venture to any great distance from the shore. These observations apply to the entire coast, with the exception of the harbours of Waterford and Dungarvan.

The commerce of the county, consisting of the export of agricultural produce and cottons, and of the import of timber, iron, coal, and British and foreign manufactures and commodities of every kind, is almost wholly carried on in the city of Waterford.

« Waterford Geology | Index | Waterford Rivers »

County Waterford | Waterford Towns and Baronies | Waterford Topography | Waterford Agriculture | Waterford Geology | Waterford Manufacturing | Waterford Rivers | Waterford Antiquities | Waterford City


Library Ireland Facebook